Category Archives: Urban scene

Back in training (healthy)

Monday 1st March 2021, 4.45pm (day 3,476)

Footie training, 1/3/21

I put up this photo because I love the backdrop of the houses on Calder Holmes Park. A proper football landscape if ever there was one. I put this up also because of how it wound up certain people when I posted it on a Facebook group earlier. One of the most iniquitous things about the year that we have lived through is how it has wiped out the idea that any ‘ordinary people’ might be able to make their own judgments about what is healthy and safe, and what is not. Well, lockdown lovers everywhere — yes, there are certain people who are back out there, living their lives.

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Into the light (Clare with blue cube)

Sunday 28th February 2021, 2.15pm (day 3,475)

Under the railway, 28/2/21

Whatever it is I wanted to say with this picture, the cube is there; it is Clare (and I) who are just passing through.

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The forgotten court

Saturday 27th February 2021, 3.00pm (day 3,474)

Basketball court, 27/2/21

Whomever made an effort to build this small square of concrete and stick a basketball hoop at one end of it obviously had lofty ambitions for the health of the youth of Dodd Naze estate. Now it stands forlorn and forgotten: no more than a third of a mile from my house as the crow flies yet until today I had no idea it was there. But that also means it hasn’t featured on here before, and as the second half of the blog’s tenth year opens with us still in (nominal) lockdown; new scenes are precious.

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Unseen corner

Wednesday 24th February 2021, 11.15am (day 3,471)

Graveyard, 24/2/21

This little graveyard perches on the hillside, across the valley from my house. With a powerful enough pair of binoculars, it might even be possible to see this diorama from our bedroom window. But until today, it had gone unseen. There’s nothing else to do but explore these nearby hidden corners.

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Dead brolly

Tuesday 23rd February 2021, 3.50pm (day 3,470)

Dead brolly, 23/2/21

In fact, this is so dismembered I’m not even sure it is, or used to be, an umbrella. But never mind. It makes a difference from depicting the dead city of Manchester more generally. And does reflect what was a quite windy day.

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Market, with real people

Saturday 20th February 2021, 2.20pm (day 3,467)

I had candidates for today that were better pictures, maybe, but I really wanted to see people’s faces today. And no, I don’t mean masked ones.

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That face, or not

Tuesday 16th February 2021, 9.00am (day 3,463)

Kylieskin, 16/2/21

Ten full days have passed without a single human appearing on this blog, in any form. Here are two — one frozen in time, idealised, commercialised. The other mobile, but faceless, distant, dehumanised. I can interact with neither. And the trouble is, I’m not evern sure what is better, any more.

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No beauty

Saturday 13th February 2021, 11.45am (day 3,460)

Snowy car park, 13/2/21

The establishment in question is located somewhere round here but that sign isn’t pointing to it. Instead it just presides over a mostly empty car park, where there should be signs of visitors, shoppers, people just hanging out in the town centre on a Saturday.

One of the lies we’ve been sold over the last year centres around the notion of ‘essentia’ and ‘non-essential’ retail. Amazon can compel their drones to go work in warehouses that are centres of virus transmission, but I am not allowed to patronise a local bookshop, nor to buy a pair of shoes. This has been an unparalleled opportunity to shaft small businesses, one the Tories (backed up by Labour, who are even worse) have taken with glee, while puttng on their concerned face, and telling us it’s all for our own good. Not if you are a business owner, I imagine. But that’s OK, we can just blame them for ‘not adapting’, like not inventing a way to get nails done online. Sorry to break out into this again, but there’ll be weeks more of this crap yet.

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Strawberry Field, forever

Thursday 11th February 2021, 11.25am (day 3,458)

Strawberry Field, 11/2/21

So I was just passing through Woolton, a suburb of Liverpool, today, and passed these gates to the Salvation Army children’s home of Strawberry Field. Around the corner, on Menlove Lane, grew up a certain John Lennon, who used to enjoy the annual Sally Army parties, where the brass bands played and he would play in the garden. In 1966 he began tossing around some ideas for a psychedlic pop epic about these memories — and the rest, you probably know. The original building was demolished in the 1970s, but it still functions as a visitor centre and, as you can see, attracts the occasional pilgrim.

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Still in England (still snowing)

Tuesday 9th February 2021, 3.05pm (day 3,456)

More snow, 9/2/21

So exciting was yesterday that it slipped my mind that it was the day on which this record was confirmed — this is now the longest run of English-only pictures on this blog. As of today it is 144 days since day 3,312, when Scotland (in the form of Loch Skeen) featured for the day. That, and the one from about 100 yards into Wales on 24/6/20, are all that I have taken outside England in over a year. This is not the life I was leading up to that point; make your own judgments as to whether it’s a better or worse thing for all concerned, but it at least illustrates the impact of all the present crap. (And it is crap. This is not a political point.)

Also, in West Yorkshire anyway, it’s still snowing.

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